Osyka Library

568 West Railroad Avenue
Osyka, MS 39657

601-542-5147

About

Osyka Public Library where history is stored by volumes, books to read on a rainy day. Computers for that school report. Knowledge abounds from every sort.

As in many communities, the depression-era WPA brought the first public library to Osyka. Among the librarians were Mrs. Lillie Bergold and Mrs. Kate Ott. All WPA libraries closed when WWII began in 1941. In 1956, the leaders of Osyka gave support to efforts for establishing a tax structure supporting a public library. The effort failed. In July 1960, the I.C.R.R. Park building was vacated and offered as a possible library site. The Mississippi Library Commission approved the site, the first public library in Pike County under the Commission. The library formally opened August 19, 1961 under librarian Mrs. Lucy Varnado. In a time when many public buildings lacked air conditioning, Joseph Bancroft of Croft Metal Products, Inc., donated one to the newly formed library. Subsequent librarians include Mrs. Brewer Wall, Mrs. Julia Lee Cutrer, Mrs. Genevieve Price, and Mrs. Jennie H. Jones. Plans are now underway to move the contents of the Osyka Library to a newly remodeled facility where it will remain to serve the town. 

The name Osyka, as legend has it, was the name of a Choctaw maiden whose early death forestalled her marriage plans. Her father requested that the founding fathers name the little settlement after his beloved daughter. Osyka's first white settler was Jesse Redmond, who came into the area from South Carolina in 1812. The Varnados, along with Leonard, Samuel, Moses, and George, and Samuel and Charity Carter, had settled near Osyka in 1809. After fighting in the Battle of New Orleans, Redmond married the Carter's daughter, Elizabeth. The State of Mississippi was created in 1817. The Choctaw Chief Dancing Rabbit, who is thought to be buried at Chatawa, ceded more land in 1830, bringing in an increasing number of settlers. After the railroad came to Osyka in 1854, new settlers began pouring into the Osyka area. Osyka was chartered in 1858. A Yellow Fever epidemic in 1878 took the lives of 53 Osyka residents and hundreds of other Pike County residents. In the great fire of 1891, town records and many businesses were destroyed. Despite wars, fires, and epidemics, the small town named for an Indian maiden has survived.

Ms. Wanda Moyer is the current branch manager. 

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